Australia’s military commander in the Middle East has reaffirmed his nation’s commitment to the Combined Maritime Forces (CMF) mission; to promote security, stability and prosperity in the Gulf region.
Major General Craig Orme, Australian Army, Commander of Joint Task Force 633 based in the UAE, met with Vice Admiral John Miller, Commander, U.S. Naval Forces Central Command, U.S. 5th Fleet, Combined Maritime Forces, during a visit to the multinational organisation’s operational headquarters in Bahrain.
During the visit Major General Orme said: “Australia has made a long standing commitment to maritime security in the region through our naval deployments since the 1990s and this commitment remains unchanged. Australia will continue to contribute to the international campaign against piracy and the ongoing fight against terrorism.”
Australia contributes to the CMF mission in a number of ways. HMAS Melbourne is a key asset within CTF 151, the CMF’s counter piracy task force. She is the 56th Royal Australian Navy ship rotation to the region since the beginning of the Gulf War in 1990.
In addition, the Australian Maritime Operations Support Group in Bahrain fills key leadership and operations support positions within the CMF headquarters, and the Logistic Support Element delivers services to Australian ships deployed in the region which contribute to CMF tasking.
Major General Orme used the occasion of his visit to present a number of medals. He also awarded a Commander’s Commendation to Leading Seaman Genevieve Richardson in recognition of her outstanding efforts within the Australian Logistic Support Element.
Leading Seaman Richardson said: “I appreciate the opportunities I have had during my deployment in Bahrain and that my efforts have helped make a difference for the team.”
CMF is a multinational naval partnership of 29 nations, which promotes security, stability and prosperity across approximately 2.5 million square miles of international waters, encompassing some of the world’s most important shipping lanes.